Elon University is ranked #89 among the nation’s most prestigious comprehensive universities, with a #1 ranking for excellence in undergraduate teaching and a #6 ranking for most innovative national university. The 2023 rankings are included in the annual U.S. News & World Report “Best Colleges” guide.

U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges badge image for Undergraduate Teaching 2022-2023.

Elon is ranked #1 in the nation for excellence in teaching.

As the #1 ranked national university for undergraduate teaching, Elon leads a group of outstanding universities committed to teaching excellence, including Brown University, Princeton University, Rice University, Boston College, Dartmouth College, Georgia State University, the College of William & Mary, University of Maryland – Baltimore County and University of Notre Dame.

Schools in the National Universities category offer a full range of undergraduate majors, plus master’s and doctoral programs. Elon moved to the category in 2019 after it was classified as a Doctoral/Professional University by the Carnegie Classification of Colleges. The top schools in the National Universities category this year are (in rank order) Princeton, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Harvard University, Stanford University, Yale University, University of Chicago, Johns Hopkins University, University of Pennsylvania, California Institute of Technology, Duke University and Northwestern University.

#1Learning Communities
90%First-Year Student Retention Rate
#21in Alumni Giving
12:1Student-Faculty Ratio

Elon is also ranked by U.S. News & World Report as the #6 most innovative national university. Schools in the top 10 include Arizona State University, Georgia State University, Carnegie Mellon University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Stanford University, Purdue University-West Lafayette, Georgia Institute of Technology, California Institute of Technology, Johns Hopkins University and University of Maryland-Baltimore County. Duke University is ranked #13, North Carolina A&T University and North Carolina State University #52 and Wake Forest University #59.

Elon is ranked #89 overall among national universities based on strong scores in several areas of the U.S. News “Best Colleges” methodology. Elon ranks #21 in alumni annual financial support, #73 in graduation and student retention rates, with 90 percent of first-year students returning for their sophomore year and 83 percent going on to graduate within six years. Elon is one of only 23 schools with zero percent of classes larger than 50 students.

This year’s #1 national ranking for teaching excellence is a testament to the strong relationships faculty mentors build with their students inside and outside the classroom. Teaching and mentorship are central to an Elon education, and with the support of staff across the university, Elon’s highly skilled faculty are impacting the lives of their students on a daily and lifelong basis.

Connie Ledoux Book, Elon University president

For the eighth straight year, Elon is the leader in the “Programs to Look For” feature – the only college or university ranked in the top 20 in all eight categories of academic programs linked to student success and positive learning outcomes.

  • #1 Learning Communities
  • #2 First-Year Experiences
  • #3 Service Learning
  • #3 Study Abroad
  • #5 Senior Capstone
  • #7 Undergraduate Research/Creative Projects
  • #9 Internships/Co-ops
  • #19 Writing in the Disciplines

With Elon ranked in the top 20 in eight categories, Duke University and Agnes Scott College were ranked in the top 20 in seven categories; Yale University in six; and Amherst College, Carleton College, Princeton University and Stanford University in five categories.

Top 10 National Universities Recognized for Undergraduate Teaching:

  • #1 Elon University
  • #2 Brown University
  • #3 Princeton University
  • #3 Rice University
  • #5 Boston College
  • #5 Dartmouth College
  • #7 Georgia State University
  • #7 College of William & Mary
  • #9 University of Maryland – Baltimore County
  • #9 University of Notre Dame

Top 10 “Most Innovative” National Universities:

  • #1 Arizona State University
  • #2 Georgia State University
  • #3 Carnegie Mellon University
  • #4 Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • #5 Stanford University
  • #6 Elon University
  • #7 Purdue University – West Lafayette
  • #8 Georgia Institute of Technology
  • #9 California Institute of Technology
  • #10 Johns Hopkins University
  • #10 University of Maryland – Baltimore County